July 28, 2015

Open for 2015 {Week 28}

On Saturday, our family had plans to visit the four covered bridges in our county.   The kids and I had taken a driving tour to see them shortly after we moved here two years ago, but my husband had never been.  The drive affords one a chance to take in some of Western PA's beautiful countryside and each bridge offers a brief history lesson, making one wonder how many carriages passed over them, what their riders and drivers talked and worried about, and if the past was as quaint as we would like to believe.  Well, I don't know if my children were thinking about those things, but I was.

Earlier in the week, I was so thrilled we had a free Saturday morning and plans to go on a family adventure.  When I woke up Saturday morning, however, the but-you-could-get-so-much-done vice began to tighten its grip on my thoughts.  Delight disappeared and all I could see were the myriad things  I "really should" do with that empty morning.

But the morning wasn't empty, we had plans!  The hours were already accounted for and I was going to get to be with my family.  People, I had to talk myself back into the plans I was so excited about just a couple of days before!  Aren't our emotions and minds strange like that?  I mean, really. I am embarrassed to admit that I was going to let unnecessary concern about tasks - that could be done at any time - keep me from some good, quality, summery family time.

Not long ago I read a quote that said something like, We need to learn to live with the undone.  The gist was that there will constantly be things left undone or things needing done that we cannot get to at a moment.  I struggle with this a great deal.  I choose, wisely, to spend my time in the morning one way, then spend my afternoon regretting that I didn't spend it in a "more productive" way, even if I had a fantastic time doing the other thing.  I am a silly girl and need to learn to value rest as much as I do productivity, or the illusion thereof.

Anyway, back to Saturday.  I talked myself out of even suggesting to my husband that we postpone.  Into the car we climbed with a small bag of snacks, five water bottles, the camera and tripod, and directions.  The day was glorious, the company was my own personal fantastic four, and we had a wonderful morning together, ending in the early afternoon with a visit to a farm market that was new to all of us and a Wendy's lunch.

How foolish it would have been to stay home and do chores!

I guess Saturday's lesson was practicing being OPEN to what is before me, not changing plans for fear of what I might miss out on or might make me feel more accomplished.  I know it doesn't always work out this way, but funnily enough Saturday morning was so relaxing and fun that when we got home I had energy for tidying up, vacuuming, and dusting!  I would not have believed you if you had told me in the morning that the day would turn out that way.  Not. at. all.  The Good Lord is trying to help me deal with my idols and I'm so thankful He got through to stubborn me this past weekend allowing for time with family and time to restore order.  Grace upon grace!

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5-6

Time to Take Action:  Do you have a hard time resting?  Does it make you feel guilty?  Do you feel like you're "supposed to" use every blessed second to get something done?  The irony of this style of life is that not resting usually leads to less productivity!  The Lord instructs His people to rest from physical labor and to spiritually rest in Him.  We can express our trust in Him and our love for Him by being the finite ones we are and obeying His instruction.  After all, it is most wise to let the One who is God be God.

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